Long-Distance Hikers Are Always Fascinating

Posted by on September 2, 2013 in Appalachian Trail, Appalachian trail Books, Skywalker--Close Encounters on the Appalachian Trail, Skywalker--Highs and Lows on the Pacific Crest Trail | 0 comments

http://www.amazon.com/Skywalker-Close-Encounters-Appalachian-trail-ebook/product-reviews/B004Y6AGJ6/ref=cm_cr_dp_synop?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=0&sortBy=bySubmissionDateDescending#R10H97V4AJCCUVI recently reviewed the above review for my Appalachian Trail narrative, Skywalker–Close Encounters on the Appalachian Trail. The reviewer writes that “Long-distance hikers are always fascinating people.” Bingo–or almost so, anyway. Yeah, you can probably find a few duds out there; it’s the law of averages. But on the whole, hikers are much more colorful than your average doctor, lawyer, accountant, librarian, what have you. Why is this the case?

Well first, let me say that some of these same hikers might be boring lawyers, accountants, etc. But when they liberate themselves from their desks, they enter a whole different world, both physically and psychologically. It is a world where individualism and altruism are valued, but greed and status-seeking is frowned upon. That is bound to have a positive effect on almost anyone.

The possibilities are endless as well. On my AT (Appalachian Trail) thru-hike, I hiked for several days with a twosome dubbed The Honeymooners. That’s right, they were thru-hiking on their honeymoon. Pretty dangerous, huh. But they made it, which I reckon bodes well for their marriage.

The Troll family is prominently featured in my Appalachian Trail. This was a father and mother in their late thirties, along with their ten year-old son. How cool is that–think how much more the ten year old learned out there, compared to a regular year in school. The father tutored him in geography all along the way; the mother was always last in their hiking formation, yielding her the trail name, ‘Anchor’.

Surely my experience was not unique. Anyone who has walked extensively on the AT has a cascade of stories they can colorfully retell. And I thank the Amazon reviewer for reading my book, and yielding this trenchant analysis.

Bill Walker is the author of Skywalker–Close Encounters on the Appalachian Trail. He is also the author of Skywalker–Highs and Lows on the Pacific Crest Trail, The Best Way–El Camino de Santiago, and Getting High–The Annapurna Circuit in Nepal. Walker, who is 7-feet tall, is currently working on a whimsical book on the subject of height.

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